April 2014 - Carnival Imagination to Mexico
I had heard all of the naysayers' comments -- tiny rooms, seasickness, bad food, ridiculously priced drinks, et cetera...and, as such, I figured, for the (very low) price, I was going to get what I paid for; still, I figured, what the heck - let's give it a try. And I am so glad that I did! From the word "go," it was awesome. Dropped off at the port, I was visited by a porter who took our bags. I quickly checked in, breezed my way through security and, within 15 minutes of being dropped off, my partner and I were in our beautiful, spacious room (and it was just a regular view state room - no fancy suite or anything) hardly believing how much room we had and how nicely appointed the room was. Then, after some very brief (2 minutes?) unpacking, it was time to go exploring. We headed straight up to the pool area (which, I can now say, is on the Lido deck) and I was immediately in awe. This was not some cheap discount cruise ship -- this ship was gorgeous! Beautifully done from top to bottom - everything wowed us. In a few steps there was a waiter carrying around some surprisingly affordable fruity cocktails which, of course, we immediately snapped up (easy - sign to your room, no need to carry anything but the card they give you to charge things back to the room) and, just like that, we were on vacation. We enjoyed everything - the food was very good, the selection of food was amazing, running around the ship, like a huge maze, made me feel like a kid on Christmas morning. So much to do, if you wanted to do it -- and, on the other side of that coin, when the mood struck, we could do absolutely nothing at all. But, regardless of what we did, we relaxed, enjoyed the time, and, even though it was just a short trip, I don't think I thought about work for even a moment. I have a business trip to Orlando FL scheduled for next week and, after this first cruise, I decided last week to have a peek to see if anything was leaving around the time I'm going to be in Orlando (as Port Canaveral, a prolific port, is just outside of Orlando). I was thrilled to see that the Carnival Sensation was doing a 4 night jaunt to a couple of the Caribbean islands exactly when I would've been able to take it. That night I asked my partner what he thought and, without missing a beat, he said "let's do it." So, just 38 days from today (but who's counting?), I'll be on my second Carnival cruise. And I cannot wait. Don't hesitate - nevermind the naysayers. Go for it. It's just awesome!